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Did you know? : The first peal of Painswick Surprise Major was rung at All Saints on 10 May 1933.

Outside the Tower

 The pictures here record the tower stonework before and after the work to stabilise the surface of the stonework during summer 2005. The body of the tower is built from 'pudding stone' (the brown rock visible in the early pictures) with limestone quoins (pale grey rock at the edges). Look closely at the limestone and you can see tiny fossils in it. Look at the puddingstone and you see very big pebbles. It is a coarse 'conglomerate', with pebbles an inch or more across, loosely held together in a finer, iron-rich matrix, which gives it the brown colour.

The surface eroded with the weather, and pebbles regularly dislodged and fell down over many years. In 2003 this was declared a hazard, and the area round the tower fenced off. In order to permit safe use of the west door, a corrugated metal roof was erected in 2004 to protect people from falling pebbles.

The summer of 2005 saw the tower shrouded in scaffolding while the stonework was stabilised. First several tons of looses material were removed from the surface. It was then rendered with a lime based mortar and covered with multiple layers of naturally pigmented lime wash. When the tower emerged from its cocoon at the end of 2005, its appearance was very different from before, but no so different from how it looked 200 years ago, before the original rendering was removed in the mid 19th century.

The puddingstone on the tower is now no longer visible. The only place it can be seen is high up on the walls of the clerestory. .


Click each to enlarge and move between pictures using the arrows.

Tower around 2003
Tower from North East before 2003
Fossils in the limestone
Base of the tower - late 2004
Protection against falling pebbles - late 2004
Tower in scaffold 2005
Tower in scaffold - 2005
Tower clad in sheeting 2005
Tower unveiled - late 2005
View from North East - late 2005
Puddingstone still visible in South gate arch

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